In my town where I live, we have a lot of elderly who made this beautiful town their retirement town. They range in ages from mid sixties to mid nineties. They keep this town on its toes with this ” I- lived- and- survived, -now- listen- to- me!” attitude. They follow the rules when it suits them and sometimes when a rule just does not make sense, they make up new rules.  As locals,we made peace with them. They are here and play a vital role in our community. We learn from them, respect them and above all, enjoy them. 🙂

When you really want to see sparks fly, then come to Hermans when it is holiday time and our little coastal town is flooded with tourists, who do not know of this “hierarchy”. For instance our grocery store has a way that you walk through it. You walk in and immediately start at the left and make you way round to the right. I don’t know how this started, most probably a oupa who was high up in the military and decided that order must be put in place. He then gathered all his other oupa and ouma friends, told them his plan and Bob’s your uncle, from that day on we all walk in at the left and make our way to the right.

Now the tourists, they just don’t know this secret rule. They flock this place with their fast pace lives and their everything must be done now expectation. If they want the carrots that is in the middle isle, they walk there without following the path. And that is when I laugh! Oee, our oumas and oupas do not tolerate that! I have once seen a grown man, red as beetroot with many excuses as a ouma told him how rude he is! I love them! { By the way, ouma means grandma in afrikaans and oupa means grandpa in Afrikaans.} But what really blesses my heart is when I see one of these legends of our town and his / her eyes still glitter with hope.

Just now, where I am sitting in a coffeeshop, an Ouma sat opposite me, enjoying her cup of tea and croissant. Her phone rang and she had this vibrant conversation with a friend: ” Yes, I am in town drinking my tea. I had a croissant and Jam!” Then she burst out laughing. I looked at her with her contagious laugh and smiled as I realise that she really enjoyed that croissant and jam as if she ate it for the first time. It blesses me tremendously if I see a very happy ouma and oupa. I mean really, they have lived through a lot and still they laugh and enjoy life. Sometimes I look at my piers and on some days at myself and I really wonder if we will even make 50 at this rate with all the negativity going around. Let’s be honest, sometimes our generation really live like life got to us.

This morning, I woke up after a bad night of sleep. Hubby is out of town on business and I missed him. I have loads of work and yesterday I ate something bad which led to me not being able to work and being sick in bed. I woke up this morning, anxious. Just before I jumped out of bed to make my way to my office to sit down and work, I heard the whisper of God: ” Isn’t it amazing to see Stoffel so happy?” I sat back in my bed and thought about it. I have a happy husband. Then the next whisper came: ” Isn’t it amazing how your boy moved last night, he had a little dance party in there last night! ” I nodded my head, yes , yes that was amazing. He is a little dancer , God! I answered. Then the next whisper: ” Wasn’t it wonderful how you could phone your mom yesterday when you were sick and she came and helped you?” Yes, Lord, I am so fortunate to have them close by.

And then I got it:

He was teaching me to be thankful.

Just like that anxiety left and life came back. As I watched the ouma opposite me eat her croissant and really enjoying it, I realised their secret to living this life undefeated: They know how to be thankful for the little things.

Have a blessed week!

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